The overall aim of this study was to systematically characterize one source of information that patients and caregivers may use to inform their opinions about ADHD and cannabis: the Internet US Internet users query the Internet for healthcare information.
Analysis of online information has been increasingly used to identify emerging patterns of substance use, though this has not been extended to substance use in ADHD. Online forums, in particular, were selected for this study since psychiatric and substance use populations report using forums to inform their healthcare decisions.
These forums facilitate social interactions and allow individuals to self-disclose their unfiltered experiences, inquiries, and opinions about substance use in an anonymous format, and may be a fruitful starting point for understanding what patients and caregivers are exposed to when searching for information about the effects of cannabis on ADHD.
In summary, there is a dearth of systematic studies analyzing a source of online information patients and caregivers might access to learn about the effects of cannabis on ADHD-this is the first study, to our knowledge, to do so.
Here is the full scientific article if you wish to download it.
The findings involving the trend of online forum threads advocating for the therapeutic effects of cannabis for ADHD are particularly important since patients and caregivers seek out information online. This study also demonstrates the utility of online data to examine trends in substance use and to inform future studies.
In particular, findings from this study indicate the need to assess perceptions involving cannabis use and ADHD in ADHD patients, in addition to examining the objective effects of cannabis use on ADHD symptoms and associated features.
The study is 50/50, it’s important to keep an open mind as studies on cannabis continue on to research its potential therapeutic effects and side effects.